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John Stanley Palmer (1926–2001)

by Peter Sheldon

This article was published:

John Stanley Palmer (1926-2001)

Born: 7 August 1926, Windsor N.S.W. Son of Stanley, carpenter-builder and Una Williams, netbraider. Married Helen Ursula Finch, 1957.

  • Educated at Wilberforce Public School; moved with family to Victoria;
  • Improver-carpenter, Kiewa hydro-electric project Victoria; became Minute Secretary at first union meeting at age 15;
  • Joined Communist Party at age of 16; active in party until mid-1950s;
  • Served in RAAF during WWII;
  • Returned to Kiewa to complete improvership; Short spell as carpenter, Warragamba Dam NSW 1946 before returning to Kiewa; Organiser, Country Victoria  Building Workers Industrial Union (BWIU) 1952-53; Carpenter and BWIU rep. Warragamba 1954-64;
  • Very active with F.R. Greentree in interunion solidarity at Warragamba, chairing Combined Unions Committee and instrumental in sale of township houses to their residents; Promoted to overseer, and later Construction Inspector, 1964 and joined Salaried Officers' Division of Water Board Union;
  • Held many positions within Salaried Division, including President, Vice-President of ACSPA, NSW; Alternative member of NSW Crown Employees' Appeals Board and employee representative on Water Board, June 1980.

Sydney Water Board Journal, July 1980; P. Sheldon thesis; Interview with John Palmer 19 Feb. 1993

Additional Resources

Citation details

Peter Sheldon, 'Palmer, John Stanley (1926–2001)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 16 April 2024.

© Copyright People Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


7 August, 1926
Windsor, New South Wales, Australia


13 January, 2001 (aged 74)
Wilberforce, New South Wales, Australia

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

Military Service
Key Organisations
Political Activism